Olympic Gold Medalist Tom Daley celebrated yet another milestone this weekend: his home country of the UK awarded him the coveted title of the OBE, the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, for his queer rights activism and contributions to athletics.
Daley, 27, received the order on New Year’s Day and used the moment to call for broader acceptance of LGBTQ people.
“I feel it’s almost like a responsibility to make the whole Commonwealth a better place for LGBT people, for women, for people of color, to make it a more inclusive and more accepting environment,” he told morning program BBC Breakfast. “It is now my responsibility to try and help create change and help create this environment where everybody can be anything that they want, no matter where they came from.”
“I think it’s really important to be able to lift up all of the people that feel like they’re outsiders, feel like they don’t fit in, and feel like they have been ‘less than’ for so many years, to support them in being whatever they want to be,” he also added. “I feel…able to lift up their voices.”
Daley won the Gold Medal at the 2020 Olympics opposite his diving partner, Matty Lee, in the men’s synchronized 10 meters platform. Throughout his career, Daley has promoted LGBTQ rights-related causes alongside his husband, Oscar-winning writer Dustin Lance Black. The couple also has a son together, Robbie, born in 2018.